Latinos have contributed significantly to the success of the United States while overcoming systemic discrimination — and our stories have largely been erased from U.S. history.
Now, our stories will have a new home with a Latino Museum on the National Mall.
From astronaut José Hernández, athlete Roberto Clemente, and Medal of Honor recipient Macario García to Supreme Court Justice Sonya Sotomayor, civil rights organizer Dolores Huerta, and cultural icon Selena Quintanilla, Latinos are from many nations, compose diverse cultures, and have contributed to what it means to be an American.
Amidst the historic devastation of Latino communities by COVID-19, it is more important than ever to preserve and celebrate Latino stories for future generations.
This achievement is a testament to New York Congressman José Serrano. Born in humble circumstances in Puerto Rico, raised in public housing in the Bronx, and completing 46 years in public service, Representative Serrano has fulfilled the American Dream. Future generations will learn about the triumphs and setbacks of Latinos in the United States and be inspired to expand our nation’s greatness to all Americans.
Thank you to the community champions of the National Museum of the American Latino, whose persistent advocacy powered a broad coalition to make this museum possible. I commend Senator Bob Menendez for his unwavering commitment over two decades to creating this museum and for his leadership shepherding this legislation in the Senate. I also want recognize Representatives Cardenás and Hurd for their work securing bipartisan support in the House.
Editor’s Note: The above guest column was penned by U.S. Rep. Joaquin Castro on behalf of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC). Castro, a Democrat from San Antonio, chairs the CHC. Castro wrote the column following inclusion of the National Museum of the American Latino in the fiscal year 2021 appropriations bill that was passed by Congress on Dec. 21, 2020.
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